The shares of Wanda Cinema Line, China’s largest private sector movie exhibitor plunged by 10% on Monday after the company announced revenue data for the first half year. Shares closed Monday down RMB21.97 at RMB197.71, still more than nine times their recent listing price.
The Shenzhen-listed company announced total revenues of RMB3.48 billion in the first six months of the year, an increase of 41% compared with the same period last year. Gross box office revenues were up 43% at RMB2.85 billion. That is a shade slower than the growth of theatrical box office nationwide.
Gross box office across the whole of China expanded 49% from RMB13.2 billion in the first six months of 2014 to RMB20 billion ($3.22 billion) from January to June 29, according to unofficial data from the M-Time website.
The total has been boosted by the strong performance of Hollywood blockbusters including “Furious 7” and “Avengers: Age of Ultron,” and the market share for Chinese films slipped to 46.5%. However, as an exhibitor Wanda is largely agnostic concerning the origin of the films shown in its cinemas.
Wanda said that online ticketing is growing fast. It said that online ticket sales were up by 300% compared with the same period last year, and were worth RMB1.55 billion or 54% of its box office revenues. It claimed 40 million loyalty scheme members.
As of June 30, the company operated 191 complexes with 1,684 screens.
The company was spun off from Dalian Wanda group and conducted an IPO in January this year, at RMB21.35 per share. Last month the company confirmed that it is to pay a cash price of US$366 million for Australia’s second largest cinema chain Hoyts. The assumption of Hoyts’ debt is likely to take that figure to around US800 million. Wanda Cinema said last month that it would fund the purchase through a $345 million (RMB2.14 billion) share issue.
- On Tuesday, Wanda Cinema announced that it had pacted with Mtime, China’s leading movie portal and film e-commerce destination, to enter into the movie merchandising market. Wanda and Mtime will build merchandising centers in all of Wanda’s top city theaters in China. Mtime has 160 million unique monthly users and established physical stores in 10 cities earlier this year.
This partnership will provide the most complementary product designs and offerings to best meet the Chinese consumers’ needs, with a one-stop shopping experience when they come to our theaters. This also marks an important milestone in China’s movie market, the first time a Chinese company is launching this scale of resources into movie merchandising,” said Zeng Maojun, President of Wanda Theater Group.